Except for frontliners and APORs (authorized persons outside of residence), today, we, in this urban jungle and the nearby provinces, are now back on house arrest. It’s a bitter decision the authorities have to impose to curb the surge in the number of victims caused by the virulence of the Delta variant.

As a journalist, a frontliner, I have the flexibility of moving around. Despite this, I usually work from home. From my point of view, the lockdown is very timely if I may say so. By prescription, I’m prevented from going out, on my doctor’s advice, following receipt of my second jab last Monday, four days prior to the lockdown.

At the onset, like some people, I have reservations on having myself inoculated because I seldom go out. But, since my doctors advised that the best protection is inoculation, I enlisted with a number of groups: my Rotary club, the LGU, and a private firm.

Because for the apprehensive, the hanging question is: Will COVID-19 vaccines provide long term protection? In answer to this query, the World Health Organization website states: “Because COVID vaccines have only been developed in the past months, it’s too early to know the duration of protection of COVID-19 vaccines. Research is ongoing to answer this question. However, it is encouraging that available data suggest that most people who recover from COVID-19 develop an immune response that provides at least some period of protection against reinfection – although we’re still learning how strong this protection is, and how long it lasts.”

The government is uncompromising in its drive for the people to be inoculated. Some establishments give incentives for the fully vaccinated. This holds true, likewise, in the US. Though, it’s the reverse. It was reported Tuesday that starting September, New Yorkers will have to show proof of vaccination, otherwise, they will be barred from entering restaurants, gyms, and other indoor places.

And, San Miguel Corp. is all out in supporting the government’s goal for herd immunity. Specifically, for one year and nearly five months since the global pandemic, it has extended its helping hand to lighten up the load of the government, and more importantly, the condition and situation of the people, its customers.

Hats off to the private sector as the value of their assistance did not pass unnoticed. In his fifth and last State of the Nation Address, President Duterte, without mentioning names, acknowledged their assistance in the government’s vaccination campaign to curb the spread of the virus with an end in view of curtailing the further erosion on the economy brought about by the pandemic.

Taking a hard look at the situation we’re in at the moment, it is a concern that on a daily basis, incident statistics, community transmission, are on the uphill climb as  the Delta variant gains momentum.

In a gratifying move, San Miguel decided to step up to the challenge, aiming to inoculate 35,000 of its employees and its extended workforce in five weeks as well as accelerating its nationwide vaccination drive. It sees the urgency to fast-track its inoculation drive as well as increase the people’s awareness of its benefits. 

And in the service of its consumers, San Miguel president and chief operating officer Ramon S. Ang, RSA,  has allocated a hefty P1 billion for its vaccination program. No one is beneath its inoculation drive with the catch phrase “Ligtas Lahat.” San Miguel even invited some members of the Economic Journalists Association of the Philippines to its inoculation program.

“Our immediate vaccination goals are in line with the government’s aim to reduce COVID-19 cases that can lead to severe illness, hospitalization, and even death, and to lessen the burden on our health facilities and medical workers. Our goal is to work quickly, efficiently, and safely to have everyone completely vaccinated and protected against COVID-19, and the emerging Delta variant, which is more transmissible according to our health experts.”

Indeed, time is of the essence here. We are in a race against time.

Talkback to me at sionil731@gmail.com

Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2021/08/06/in-the-service-of-stakeholders/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=in-the-service-of-stakeholders)